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Michigan Representative District 48

Choose one candidate. Representatives in the Michigan State House serve two-year terms and receive an annual salary of $71,685.

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  • Pam Faris
    (Dem)

  • Candidate picture

    Joseph Reno
    (Rep)

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Biographical Information

How should the state assist other municipalities and school districts whose solvency is threatened by its financial obligations to current and future retirees?

Is the way the state funds our cities adequate to ensure safety and service delivery? If not, what changes would you support to our municipal finance model?

When cities are struggling, what is the appropriate way for the state to intervene? Should state intervention – through the emergency manager law or some other avenue – come with dollars attached? Why or why not?

How would you rate the state’s response to the Flint water crisis?

Explain your answer and what you would do, if anything, to improve the state’s response.

How would you rate the federal government’s response to the Flint water crisis?

Explain your answer and what you would do, if anything, to improve the federal government’s response.

Have you ever been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor? If so, explain.

Have you ever filed for personal bankruptcy? If so, explain.

Do you believe Michigan’s tax system is generally fair? If not, what changes do you support?

Would you support the establishment of a Detroit Educational Commission that would have authority to site, open and close traditional public and charter schools?

What changes, if any, would you support in the way Michigan authorizes and regulates charter schools?

Do you favor amending the Elliott-Larsen Civil Rights Act to prohibit discrimination based on a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity?

Do you support state-level laws modeled on the federal Restoration of Religious Freedom Act?

Have you signed any public pledge to support or oppose any organization’s public policy objectives, such as outlawing abortion or barring any increase in taxes?

Do you support legislation to minimize or eliminate the influence of political parties on drawing lines for legislative districts?

Do you support decriminalization of recreational marijuana?

Do you support and will you appear at campaign events with your party’s presidential nominee?

Do you support the renewal and/or expansion of renewable energy mandates for Michigan energy producers?

Do we incarcerate too many people in Michigan? What would you change in the criminal justice system?

City of residence Clio
Mailing Address P.O. Box 520
Clio, MI 48420
Age 59
Family Husband, John; Daughter Meghan; Granddaughter Madeline; Son John; Daughter-in-law Teresa
Education Associate’s degree from Mott Community College in Paralegal Tech; Bachelor’s in business administration from Baker College.
Vehicles owned We own 2 Ford C-MAX Hybrids and 2 GM trucks.
Professional Experience I worked on the line for GM through college and then worked for the County Prosecutor's office and as Jury Coordinator for the Genesee County Courts until my retirement.
Political Experience I began volunteering on political campaigns while in high school and stayed active throughout my life. I served as an elected member of the Mott Community College Board of Trustees and was then elected State Representative.
Race/ethnicity Caucasian
Incumbent? true
A municipality must maintain the health and safety of its residents. Public schools must provide students the free, quality education promised by the constitution of our state. When solvency is threatened, it is likely that major restructuring is required. While local control is important, If a school or municipality cannot provide these basic services, the state must become involved so health, safety and education do not suffer. Support from state departments such as the State Police, Health and Human Services, Treasury, Education and others may be needed. Throughout restructuring, however, every effort should be made to not threaten the independence of current retirees.
It seems clear the state is not providing adequate funding to local units of government. I frequently hear that state revenue sharing leaves communities in my district struggling to come up with ways to provides essential services. Local governments have cut to the bone in recent years to deal with the state's changes to taxes and services. I support policies that would actually generate enough revenue to solve the problem at hand, such as complete needed updates and repairs on our dangerously aged infrastructure. I also believe we need to create policies that do not leave major financial questions unanswered so that local governments can better plan their budgets.
State takeovers should be a 'nuclear option,' implemented in only when essential services would not otherwise be provided. EFMs should responsibly bring financial stability while providing the locality knowledge and tools needed to continue future stable operations. The world has seen how reckless EFMs who cut corners in the name of savings create disaster. The state needs to provide expert training, leadership and logistical support so that lessons are learned and the local entity is left able to properly manage its challenges. The state is responsible for the health, safety and education of its residents, and should provide money only if localities cannot ensure basic provision of each.
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Governor Snyder and his administration have for years remained focus on downplaying the Flint Water Crisis. From denying its existence to offering an inadequate response in every way to withholding damning evidence and starting withdrawal from the city before the problem is fixed, the state's response has been appalling. I will add that the small, slow response from the federal government is also extremely frustrating. Had the governor's administration acted properly, the Flint Water Crisis never would have appeared. The state must earns trust of the citizens. Transparency and effective, long-term action are the only ways to regain trust, and residents on Flint Water have seen neither.
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When it became clear that the State of Michigan would not come to the aid of residents serviced by Flint water, the federal government should have taken over. It is absolutely inexcusable that residents in an American city of tens of thousands have been without clean, safe drinking water for this long. The time for action (from the state and federal governments alike) was long before denial was no longer an option.
No.
No.
No. The burden of a $2 billion tax cut to giant corporations has been placed on Michigan's middle class, working families and seniors. Everyone needs to pay a fair share, so I support changes to Michigan's tax system that would level the 'paying' field, if you will. Seniors on fixed incomes should not struggle to get by so a corporate quarterly report is marginally better. Single parents with children in the home should get the benefit of tax breaks so their kids can eat three meals a day and have a warm coat in the winter, not the wealthy who have a summer home.
Yes.
Children at charters deserve a quality education from qualified teachers, just like the children who attend our public schools. Some charters do a great job, but others are using our children to collect tax dollars for corporate profit. Regardless of the motives of the charter operator, each school needs to be held accountable for the education it provides. Michigan needs to examine what kind of charter would open and the service needs of its proposed location. There is room in Michigan for a system of public education provided by traditional public schools and charters, but that system needs to be run as one unit and be held accountable for children's education.
Yes.
No.
No.
Yes.
Michigan's medical marijuana laws need much attention. I want patients, through consultation with their physicians, have the ability to choose marijuana as a medical option. Under our current system, however, local governments and police forces are left with major dilemmas caused by gaps in existing policy. Once Michigan has a comprehensive medical marijuana system that serves the need of ill patients, I am open to public debate and a possible vote on legalization of recreational marijuana use. I do strongly believe that any legal recreational use of marijuana should be regulated and taxed in ways similar to tobacco and alcohol.
I support Hillary Clinton and will do anything I can to meet a request from her campaign.
First and foremost, we need to be sure Michigan's energy needs are met. While I believe that a combination of energy sources are currently required to meet our energy needs, I support a move to renewables as aggressively as is responsibly possible.
The state needs to address the serious problem of overcrowding in the women's prison, but the overall number of inmates in Michigan is actually decreasing. Judges are elected by their communities to decide if an individual needs to be removed from society if convicted of certain crimes. I think we need to let judges do their job. As far as Michigan courts go, we need to completely change how our Supreme Court Justices are put on the state's high court. The hyper partisanship has resulted in what is broadly regarded as one of the worst courts in the nation, and Michigan deserves much better.
City of residence Davison
Age 28
Family Spouse - Melanie Reno
Education Yale High School graduate 1 year St. Clair County Community College
Vehicles owned 2
Professional Experience Washington State Patrol Trooper - 5 years Keller Williams Realty - 1 year
Political Experience N/A
Race/ethnicity White
Campaign Website http://www.joereno4mi.com
Incumbent? false
Michigan could work with local municipalities and school districts in developing attainable plans in place that would address existing budgetary issues. By creating budgets and realistic plans it will help to avoid future issues. The goal being they would be able to self-sustain.
I would like to conduct further research on this topic.
This topic would need further research. The best approach would be analyzing each case individually to find the best way to assist struggling cities with the least amount of involvement from state government.
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In this instance, too many officials dropped the ball. More transparency is needed to ensure facts are hidden or lost. This would help during issues such as this in the fact that a response could be quick and appropriate. It also ensures residents are kept informed about what is going on.
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Candidate did not provide a response.
No
No
No, I do not believe at this time that Michigan's tax system is generally fair. Right now small businesses tend to pay more in taxes than larger businesses.
Yes.
I would not make any changes in the way Michigan authorizes and regulates charter schools other than increasing transparency and accountability to ensure they are performing to standards.
Yes, I feel that with the current attention these topics are receiving, they need to be addressed properly.
I believe yes, however I would also like to do more research on this subject.
No.
Yes. I believe that a non-partisan group should have control to review and draw legislative districts. This would help eliminate unfair advantages drawn by one party or the other.
Not at this time. Until more research can be completed and solid, scientifically proven sobriety tests for Law Enforcement to use roadside, I feel it should not be decriminalized. I have worked as a Police Officer in a state where it was legalized and have experience handling individuals under the influence of marijuana. I have seen the issue of having more impaired drivers on the roadways. Some because they didn't fully understand the effects marijuana can have on the body.
Yes.
While I support renewable energy mandates, I also understand a switch cannot simply be flipped to convert from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Continuing to support research and development of these renewable energies will benefit Michigan in the long term.
Michigan has a large incarcerated population. This creates a large financial burden upon the state as it can cost approximately $35,000 to house each inmate. Michigan's criminal justice system needs to better sort out who truly poses a risk to society. Nonviolent offenders and those found to be low risk for repeat offending should have a better chance for parole. While there needs to be some reform in the Criminal Justice system, the safety of Michigan residents comes first.

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